Geodesign as support to opinion making, in local, regional and territorial scale: case studies in Brazil

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In Brazil, since the promulgation of federal constitution, in 1988, and the City Stature, in 2001, the interests about “participatory planning” became not only a desire but a law, determining that any decision in territorial planning should be constructed considering collective values. Notwithstanding, we observe lack of methods to support the intention, and in most cases a misunderstood about the sense of participation. The idea of “participation” is understood as to “win the game”, and not to choose alternative futures that are more adequate to social, economic, environmental and cultural context. In this sense, the proposal of Geodesign (Steinitz, 2012), based on a framework that stablishes steps to be followed, is a very robust methodology to support opinion making and to arrive to decision making. We conducted three case studies in Minas Gerais, Brazil, in different scales and challenges, but all of them in areas with conflicts of interests. The case study in regional scale was Quadrilatero Ferrifero, an area of 1.000.000ha characterized by historical cities, environmental resources, axis of urban growth and the most important economic area in the state due to mining activities of gold and iron ore. The case study in district scale was Pampulha, an area of 10000ha in the city of Belo Horizonte, projected by Oscar Niemeyer that had just been nominated as Unesco’s heritage because of its unique modernist architecture and urban landscape. The goal was to discuss risks of not appropriated changings in the landscape, especially urban densification, damaging the harmony in visual axis. The case study in local scale was about a slum, an area of 25ha, with the goal to face complex problems and to give support to legal regularization, considering budget restrictions, fast changing realities and needs in urban and environmental improvements. All case studies demanded studies about systems that represented vulnerabilities and attractiveness in the areas, costs and targets to be respected and achieved, and definitions about groups of interests from different sectors of society.
Book of proceedings: Annual AESOP Congress, Spaces of Dialog for Places of Dignity, Lisbon, 11-14th July, 2017
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